A media appearance coming up? Media appearances are excellent ways to raise positive awareness about your brand, but you’ll need to make a great impression first.
This story was first published on Rolling Stone Culture Council.
Getting press for your business helps your public relations tremendously, whether it means being featured on a podcast, an Instagram Live or even a news segment.
Giving a face to the business helps humanize the brand and also allows you to share more explicit insight into your company’s values.
Making a good impression in a media appearance is key, but the pressure of a live video or audio segment can be nerve-wracking. To help, 14 Rolling Stone Culture Council members share their tips for making sure you’re prepared to represent your business well.
Media Appearance? Leave the Audience With a Takeaway
In today’s fast-paced environment where there is competition for every second of attention, if you can leave someone with something they will remember, they will not forget you and the value you added to the time they gave you.
Listen and Give Thoughtful Answers
Aside from looking presentable, it’s also important to listen and understand the question and to give a thoughtful answer that explains your view in a manner most people will understand. It’s also important to be yourself.
Trying too hard to make an impression can often be cringy.
Talk About What You Know
Be honest and talk about what you know. Listeners will pick up on someone being inauthentic. Know what you know and know what you don’t know too. Admitting that you are not well-versed in something and can’t comment is more respected than making something up or sharing false information.
By providing accurate and interesting facts concisely, you will ensure that your talking points come across exactly as intended.
Mix Humor Into Your Messaging
You should be clear before the interview about what points you want to make. I live by the old saying, “Tell them what you are going to tell them, tell them and then tell them what you told them.”
Let your personality shine through, and be relatable. I always find humor mixed with your message gets the point across.
Avoid Being Overly Promotional
It’s important and worthwhile to speak about all the great work your business does and to avoid being hyperbolic and overly promotional.
Present facts and evidence for why your business is doing a great job rather than relying too much on superfluous language.
Speak Simply and Avoid Jargon
When I speak about my business, whether in interviews, podcasts or other media, I avoid jargon, tell meaningful stories and use clear examples. Talking in generalities or gibberish doesn’t resonate with anyone.
Speaking simply and specifically about my subject matter expertise engages my audience whether they are a part of the body arts industry or not. Being understood matters most.
When being interviewed by the media, so many people feel like they need to speak to the audience like they’re royalty instead of just normal folks.
Smile and be yourself so if people meet you in person they see you’re no different from who they see on TV.
Smile and Speak With Confidence
When you smile, talk with your hands and maintain a strong posture, you’re perceived as more competent, but more importantly, you look and sound more trustworthy and likable.
It doesn’t matter whether the interview is video or audio-only — we all unconsciously know what it looks and sounds like when someone is smiling, passionate and confident when speaking.
We feel it, and good feelings leave good impressions.
Have a Conversation
Listen to the question and actually answer the question. So many people are so fixated on saying what they want to say that they don’t actually wind up having a conversation.
The conversation and the back-and-forth are what people want to hear.
Craft a Simple, Repeatable Message
Work on what I like to call your “Simple, Repeatable Message.” Ours, for example, is “Your Outsourced CTO.”
This makes it super easy to explain how we can potentially help you, and it turns your customers, friends, family and even strangers into your sales army that can easily help promote your business to anyone who needs your services.
A Media Appearance – Start With Humility
People don’t want to listen to know-it-alls. You will lose their attention very quickly if you come across that way. Offer something of value. They are investing their time in listening to you, so be sure you have something to say.
Share your knowledge and provide practical examples to help illustrate what you are saying. People remember anecdotes better than random information.
Add Value and Meaning
As a futurist and professional public speaker, I’ve been on stages and screens for 22 years and have been frequently sourced by the media. Be authentic, be bold, be your audience and know their culture, values and what keeps them up at night.
Add value and meaning to their lives — don’t be a walking advertorial!
Focus on the Vision of Your Business
When being interviewed for any media, always focus on the vision and ethos of your business. Bring every question back to the fact that you’re trying to create something special, and give some insight on how you plan to make that happen.
The audience will be far more interested when you make it about more than just yourself.
Select Points You Want to Cover
Figure out in advance the three to five major points you want to make — and don’t forget the name of your company and what you do! No matter what question your interviewer asks, figure out a way to answer it with one of your points.
Watch other seasoned interviewees and learn from them. Lots of people freeze in front of the camera and end up rambling, but the “points system” prevents that.